‘Fascinating and troubling’: Australians would rather save a single human life than prevent an entire species from becoming extinct

Wed, 13 Mar 2024 19:56:30 +1100

Andrew Pam <xanni [at] glasswings.com.au>

Andrew Pam

"Australia is in the grip of an escalating extinction crisis. Since
colonisation, 100 native plant and animal species have become formally listed
as extinct due to human activities. The actual number is undoubtedly far

Surveys suggest Australians want to prevent extinctions, regardless of the
financial cost. But when it comes to the crunch, how much do we really care?

In emergency situations, there is a long-held convention that official
responders such as firefighters first attempt to save human life, then property
and infrastructure, then natural assets.

Our research published today investigated whether this convention reflects
community values. We found the people we surveyed valued one human life more
than the extinction of an entire non-human species – a result both fascinating
and troubling."

       *** Xanni ***
mailto:xanni@xanadu.net               Andrew Pam
http://xanadu.com.au/                 Chief Scientist, Xanadu
https://glasswings.com.au/            Partner, Glass Wings
https://sericyb.com.au/               Manager, Serious Cybernetics

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